Vegan Spanish Paella

Paella: Delicious. Filling. Full of veggies and doused in summer-vibes.

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Now that spring is here and sunlight and warmth are becoming more and more regular it’s time to bring out the delicious summer recipes, and Spanish food is a summer-must.

I love paella. I always have (I used to be really big on fish before I was vegan). Veganising it wasn’t the easiest thing. The seafood that’s usually mixed into it adds such outspoken flavors and structures. When veganising a dish like this you don’t want to trade in on the many wonderful elements of its taste.
I believe this recipe has managed to incorporate all those wonderful things. For expressive taste there are olives, artichokes and lime juice. For the more dense seafood structure I’ve added butter beans and the rest is filled with veggies to make sure you have as many flavors as you should have in a good paella.

This recipe serves 4 to 6 people, as paella is the kind of dish you don’t make for just one person. That also makes it so that the most work for this dish is in all the slicing and dicing. But do it with a family member or friend and that too will be done is no time.

Serves 4 – 6

Ingredients:
– 1,5 cup basmati rice
– 4 cloves garlic, finely diced
– 1 red onion, finely diced
– 8 mushrooms, thinly sliced
– 2 small-medium red bell peppers, diced
– 2 medium tomatoes, coarsely diced
– 1 cup frozen peas, defrosted
– 250 grams green beans, cut in halves/thirds
– 200 grams butter beans, rinsed
– 1 tin artichokes, quartered
– 2 tbsp black olives (15), thinly sliced
– 1 red chili, thinly sliced
– 2 bags paella herbs *
– 1 cube veggie stock
– Lime (optional)
– Fresh cilantro (optional)

* I use Hacendado paella herbs (Hacendado is a Spanish brand). You can also use any other paella herb mix (they should all contain basically the same ingredients) or combine the following herbs: salt, pepper, paprika, corn flour, ground cloves, saffran.

Directions

Preheat some olive oil in a large pan.
Bake the onion. Once the onion is translucent, add the garlic and cook for a few minutes. Add the green beans, mushrooms, tomato and bell pepper and cook for 2-3 minutes. Add the rice and herbs and cook for a few minutes. You want the mixture to be coated in the herbs and the rice must be heated before the liquid is added.
Once hot, add 5 cups of water with one cube of vegetable stock. Add the mushrooms and peas and stir through. Cover with a lid and let cook for 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally. The rice will soak up almost all the liquid but should remain a little sticky. If  this is not the case, or if the mixture dries up too quickly, add a little more water.
After the aforementioned 10-15 minutes, add the olives, butter beans and artichokes and cook for 10 more minutes until all liquid is absorbed.

Serve with fresh lime juice and cilantro (optional).

I hope you enjoy this recipe. If you do make it, please let me know in the comments what you think.

love, isabelle

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